The Astros. The Houston Astros. The (string of profanity) Houston ASTROS! Coming into this series, the Angels had lost seven of their last nine, and what better way to kick start a struggling team, then to play one of the worst teams in the game. One problem, the Angels are only two games better than the Astros in the standings, so “worst” team, is a term that probably shouldn’t be thrown around so freely in these parts.
It all started out so well too. The Angels dropped a three spot in the first after Mark Trumbo sky’d his ninth home run of the season to left. Now, stop me if you’ve heard this one: The Angels get an early lead only to let it slip away thanks to shoddy pitching an iffy defense. It’s a tired joke, I know. But it’s exactly what this season is turning into, a joke. After jumping out in front early, giving starter C.J. Wilson a lead before he even got to the mound, he immediately began to give it right back. A Jose Altuve home run in the bottom half of the first was the first blow. All was quiet in the second inning, but in the third inning, everything went straight to hell.
A base hit. A sacrifice bunt, that turned into a base hit thanks to fielding error by Hank Conger. An RBI double. An RBI single. Then, with two outs, the coup de grace, Chris Carter unloaded on 1-1 fastball from C.J. giving the Astros a 6-3 lead. So now begins the chipping away at the deficit portion of the story, only to be let down in the end. Howie Kendrick cut in to the Astros lead with a solo home run in the fifth. But that run was given back thanks to Conger’s second error of the day in the seventh. And that error might have been the one that cost them the most because in the eighth inning, Alberto Callaspo turned around a first pitch fastball for a two-run home run. But that would be it for the Halos. After that home run, the next four Angels hitters were set down in order.
On a night where C.J. struck out 12 hitters and walked only two, he deserved a better fate than this. But this is the life of a struggling team. Something is going to have to give soon, whether it be a firing, or a fire sale, something is going to have to give. Because this is starting to get ridiculous.
The Angels will be back at it again tomorrow at 5:10 PM PST when Joe Blanton toes the rubber against Bud Norris. The team will be looking to snap what is now a three game losing streak. Maybe Jobu just needs a refill. Quick, someone get this man a drink.